6 Years and Counting…

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Happy Birthday to us!

XV Insight is 6 years old this week.

What an amazing journey it has been, many highs and a few curve-balls along the way…Who could ever have imagined that a global pandemic would hits us less than three years in. The pandemic was a challenging time for everyone. We were very fortunate that market research still had a role to play during this period of national lockdown. One large project we worked on during this time, for example, was a proprietary survey looking at visitor concerns and expectations, in advance of visitor attractions reopening once restrictions were lifted. Studies such as these proved highly successful to organisations wanting to navigate their way back to a ‘new normal’ following such an unprecedented time and it was satisfying to be able to play our part in that important work during this period.

Building Relationships

We’ve worked with some amazing clients since we began in 2017, many of whom have been with us through much of our journey so far. Here’s just a short selection of our highlights:

  • Our first major project was providing Discover England Fund Large Projects research summary reports for VisitEngland. We’ve continued to build our relationship with VisitEngland and one of our more recent projects was supporting them with research into accessibility needs. This research will support their role in facilitating an accessible and inclusive tourism industry across England.
  • National Museums Liverpool are another of our long-term clients with over 20 projects completed for them over the last 6 years. Our work with them on such a broad spectrum of exhibitions has been incredible, and we’re proud to be a part of their journey as they develop their visitor experiences for the future. 
  • Our employee engagement work took the most unprecedented turns when the Covid pandemic struck, particularly in the healthcare sector. All the norms of how we work and how we live were turned upside down. Making sense of the rapidly changing priorities, understanding the role of wellbeing on workplace experience and working out what the ‘new-normal’ looks like has been a remarkable journey to be a part of.

We’ve shared projects with some fabulous culture & tourism consultancies, bringing collective expertise to deliver great results for our clients. Some highlights include: the Wetlands and Wildfowl Trust, West Midlands Growth Company and North & West Northamptonshire.

Diversity of Projects

The projects we’ve been involved in are far more diverse than we could have imagined at the start…here are a just few that spring to mind:

  • Evaluation of a photographic archiving project
  • The design of in-flight brochures for food & drink and shopping
  • The economic & social impact of student housing
  • The feasibility of converting a listed house into a leisure destination
  • Exploration of global data on attitudes to periods
  • Reporting corporate sustainability results


None of this could have been done without the amazing team of researchers I’ve had the privilege to work with over the these years – Tina, Heather, Rachael, Jen, James, Lorraine, Becky and all at Webropol. The ICG is a great network of fellow independent researchers, providing practical support on research matters. The Coventry and Warwickshire Chamber of Commerce has been a great source of support throughout the last 6 years, from those initial (daunting) networking events, though business expos (both real and virtual) to providing practical business support and guidance.

My Reflections

Running a small business is undoubtedly a challenge. After several years in big agencies, there were many unknowns and new things to learn….which lead me to put together a list of 6 take-outs for others embarking on the journey, one for each year of our journey so far:

  1. Be brave – don’t be afraid to have a go at new things 
  2. Build a network – local support and resources as well as at the national/international level
  3. Recognise that Sunday mornings may well become accounting and paperwork mornings
  4. Get yourself a good accountant who will steer you through everything HMRC
  5. Work with people you know and trust, or come with recommendations from people you know and trust!
  6. Believe in yourself – making it happen is down to you

And with that, we look forward to our next year in business!

If you would like to know more about XV Insight, please do get in touch.

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